Now that Christmas is behind us for another year and you have had the weekend to relax a good thing to do in the final days of the year is start thinking about the upcoming year. Before doing this though, take a few minutes and talk to your accountant to find out if some upcoming planned expenditures should take place in 2009 or wait until 2010, in addition to other tax related discussions. I am not a fan of spending the money just because it needs to be done, however your accountant is the best source for that information.
Planning for the upcoming year as a business is always important as it will allow you to start the new year fresh. While you are a photographer, being a professional photographer means there are many aspects to the business which you manage with sales and marketing taking a huge portion of your time. Unless you have a degree in marketing this is something which you are learning along the way by reading various blogs, articles or even books. There are many great blogs out where which will generate an idea which I will pursue, however I find some of the best ideas and approaches come from books. Reading these books will strike a chord and get me thinking in a creative manner on what I could be doing differently to reach my target audience for the various pieces of my business.
Some of the good books I have read this year are below. From each one I took something away which has helped me as a business owner and will be useful for planning the new year.
Business of Photography Books
Best Business Practices for Photographers (2nd Edition) – John Harrington: One of the best books for photographers for the business side of matters was updated in 2009 and is even better. This is something which every photographer should read and have on their bookshelf.
I’d Rather be in the Studio! – Alyson Stanfield: While targeted for artists in general this book will give you ideas of how to get your work out there for more to see. I use a lot of the items covered in this book for my personal work but it also does cross over for the commercial work.
ASMP Professional Business Practices in Photography, 7th Edition: ASMP updated this book in 2008 and brought it up to deal with the new issues in the marketplace. This also sits on my bookshelf next to the Best Business Practices for Photographers.
Tell the World You Don’t Suck: Modern Marketing for Commercial Photographers – Leslie Burns: Targeted for photographers doing more commercial work, Leslie gets the point about marketing and what you need to do in order to get your name out there in a style which is her own.
General Business Books
Tribes — Seth Godin: I think any book by author Seth Godin is good reading as he brings the important points of business to you in a great short read which you will make you think of where you need to go. Another good book by Godin is Purple Cow.
How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie: Photography is about sales and marketing, but more so relationships built in networking.
Twitter Power: How to Dominate Your Market One Tweet at a Time – Joel Comm: Twitter has grown significantly in 2009 and will continue to do so in 2010. While many people have jumped on to twitter, are they using it correctly and how can you benefit from this tool.
The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It – Michael Gerber: There is so much in starting a business that it is easy to be taken by the whole process. This book will help you manage that and remind you to also live for yourself and not just the business.
The links above you will be taken to Amazon.com, however you may be able to find the books in your local bookstore or library which are both great resources to utilize as well.
Are there any books you would add to the list which you think would be good reading for photographers or other creatives? Just by posting a comment you will be eligible to receive the 1st edition of Best Business Practices for Photographers which still is a useful book. One person will be randomly selected on January 5, 2010 and have it sent to them.